Special prosecutor explains Ochoa brothers' plea deals

Mark Luitjen: 'Capital murder cases simply weren't there'

SAN ANTONIO – Brothers Baron and Conrad Ochoa once faced capital murder charges in the 2011 deaths of Conrad Ochoa’s 10-year-old daughter, her mother and a family friend.

All three had been stabbed to death and the home where the bodies were found was set on fire. A fire, police suspect, that was deliberately set to cover up evidence of sexual abuse of the child.

Earlier this month, each brother entered into a plea bargain, pleading guilty to sexual assault and sexual performance of a child charges.

“The capital murder cases simply weren’t there,” special prosecutor Mark Luitjen said Thursday.

“All of the capital murder charges were dismissed,” Luitjen said. “But they were dismissed without prejudice, which means that in the event that new evidence is found or is brought forward then they can be re-indicted for capital murder.”

“I actually told one of the brothers at the time of his plea deal that we’re gonna be watching you,” he said.

Conrad Ochoa’s plea deal calls for a 10-year prison term. He has already been sentenced. Baron Ochoa’s deal is for 55 years in prison and he will be in court on Feb. 18 to be sentenced.

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